The 10 Best Insect Foggers

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This wiki has been updated 34 times since it was first published in August of 2015. Lay waste to mosquitoes, biting flies, and other annoying bugs intent on spoiling your summer barbecues or pool parties with one of these handy insect foggers. Good for treating large spaces, they disperse pesticides in a mist that reaches places most conventional sprays cannot. Always be careful with these around pets and children and follow the manufacturer's safety guidelines. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.

1. Petra Electric

2. Tomahawk Turbo

3. Hudson 99598

Editor's Notes

July 02, 2020:

If you imagine having a party outdoors on your property during the summer, then you know what a pain it can be to deal with pesky biting insects. I distinctly remember visiting my aunt and uncle up in the country as a child and contending with mosquitoes and all those other outdoor pests, especially after dusk. In those days, I didn't really think much about using an insect fogger to temporarily relieve myself of their company. I applied some bug spray and figured I'd be okay. But I doubt I'd want to live in (or walk around) a home like that now without one of these misters to help control the bug population around me. While these foggers are designed for use with other treatments to achieve long-term relief, they're definitely powerful enough to keep those little flying (and jumping) critters at bay for at least a short while.

We've included industrial-grade models and small-scale options no bigger than a spray can to help you get the job done. The Petra Electric, Tomahawk Turbo, and Invatech Italia 868 can all be carried around like a backpack. The large lid opening on the Petra model makes it easy to fill with whatever material is needed, while the Tomahawk offers horsepower sufficient enough to cover an entire acre in less than 30 minutes. Its throttle controls feature start and stop functions and a setting to adjust the desired spray pattern.

We've also included the durable Silver Bullet ULV, which can accept water and oil-based solutions. Using its vacuum pump motor and three jet nozzles, you can easily access tight spaces as well.

Although the Black Flag 190107 requires a couple minutes of preheating, it can provide coverage for outdoor areas up to 5,000 square feet.

Finally, both the EcoSmart Mosquito and Wondercide Natural are excellent options for controlling outdoor bug populations with kids and pets around, the latter of which is specifically designed to target fleas and ticks in your garden.

Special Honors

Oil Works DS-8000 If you need a fogger for disinfecting purposes, the commercial-grade Oil Works DS-8000 is a worthy contender. This battery-powered ultra-low volume cold mister has a dispensing range of 25 feet and can be easily carried around like a backpack. It sports a variable size nozzle and a large two-gallon tank capable of accommodating any essential oil or liquid for decontaminating large indoor environments.

Airofog AE9 The Airofog AE9 is a thermal fogging machine that uses a pulse jet principle of igniting fuel through a tuned resonator tube, which allows for continuous engine operation without any moving components. With this design, exhaust gases are mixed with a diluent containing the fogging material, resulting in a dense mist with individual particles in the size range of three to ten microns. This machine is ideal for eliminating flying insects and larvae on water surfaces and for using biocides and disinfectants both indoors and outdoors.

4. Silver Bullet ULV

5. Invatech Italia 868

6. Black Flag 190107

7. Cutter Backyard

8. EcoSmart Mosquito

9. Hot Shot Indoor

10. Wondercide Natural

Insect Foggers: What You Need to Know

These are extremely easy to use — they're basically push-button devices — but they're not likely to be effective for severe problems.

There's nothing that can quite match the sinking feeling you get when you see a cockroach scurry under the fridge in your kitchen, or when you spot bedbug droppings littering your sheets. It's enough to make you have a sudden, certain realization: you need to burn your house down.

Luckily, there's no need to get that drastic. You can take care of widespread insect infestations with an insect fogger, which is much more convenient for dealing with large-scale problems than tracking down each critter individually to give it a blast from a spray can.

Foggers are machines that disperse pesticide in the air in tiny little droplets, like — you guessed it — fog. As a result, they're well-adept at penetrating into the deep crevices bugs like to hide in that you can't easily reach, like along baseboards, behind appliances, and in fabric.

Some foggers come in cans that basically resemble your average bug spray. These are extremely easy to use — they're basically push-button devices — but they're not likely to be effective for severe problems. They do tend to be relatively inexpensive, though, so it's not a bad idea to start with one before progressing on to a heavier-duty option.

The heavy-duty models tend to be dedicated machines powered by some sort of gas — usually propane — into which you have to add your own poisons. These are ideal for commercial use, as they can allow you to customize the type and amount of pesticide you use, but they are more complicated (and, due to the presence of propane, they are flammable, so be sure you know what you're doing).

Most foggers are designed for indoor use, but there are some that you can use in your yard or on your patio to control flies, mosquitoes, ants, and other pests. Typically, though, this is only useful for providing a limited window of relief — like for a barbecue, say — and not for solving the problem on a long-term basis.

Ultimately, foggers are just one aspect of a comprehensive pest-control solution, but they can have devastating effects on vermin. There's a reason they're also called "bug bombs," after all — so we'll forgive you if you buy a leather bomber jacket and pretend to be a B-52 pilot before deploying yours.

Tips For Using Your Fogger

There are a few things you should know before unleashing your bug bomb in order to get the maximum effect and ensure your family's safety.

There are a few things you should know before unleashing your bug bomb in order to get the maximum effect and ensure your family's safety.

The most important thing you should do before you begin is check every label thoroughly, especially in regards to the pesticides. If you have pets, you need to make sure that whatever you're spraying won't harm them, or at least make arrangements to relocate them until it's safe to return. You should also make sure that the spray you're using is designed to kill whichever bugs you're targeting.

These chemicals kill on contact, so if you can't get the spray onto the bugs, it'll be useless. That means you'll likely need to move furniture out of the way. Also, be sure to thoroughly wipe down every surface in the targeted room when you're done, as you don't want to eat off a counter that's had toxic chemicals on it.

Make sure you're not going to need to be in your home for as long as the fogger is operating. It's a good idea to alert your neighbors to the fact that you'll be spraying as well, especially if you live in close quarters.

Be extremely cautious about flames or sparks, as most of these units (especially the gas-powered ones) are extremely flammable.

Other Ways To Control Your Pest Population

While a fogger is a great way to quickly get the upper hand in the battle against bugs, it's unlikely to be sufficient enough to defeat the little invaders long-term. As such, using one is best paired with other population control techniques.

The best — and easiest — way to get a handle of pest breeding is to remove the things that make your home attractive to them in the first place.

The best — and easiest — way to get a handle of pest breeding is to remove the things that make your home attractive to them in the first place. This could mean disposing of food promptly, not allowing standing water to stagnate, and ensuring that your home is properly sealed and insulated.

Your yard could be betraying you, as well. If you let the grass get long and unkempt, it becomes a breeding ground for ticks, ants, spiders, door-to-door salesmen — all things you want to keep out of your house. Mow it regularly, and don't allow piles of debris to accumulate.

Pay close attention to everything you bring inside with you, especially if it's been sitting outside for awhile. Wipe down any lawn furniture, thoroughly inspect toys, and check your clothing if you've been hiking or camping. Any pets that go outdoors regularly can bring back unwanted visitors, as well, so stay up-to-date with an effective flea treatment.

Basic cleaning is surprisingly effective against bugs, as well. Vacuuming your carpet and upholstery is a great way to get rid of eggs and larvae, and regularly sweeping floors and cleaning counter tops can prevent your home from being targeted in the first place. Plus, it has the added bonus of making your home look presentable, and making you look like an adult.

Jeff Newburgh
Last updated by Jeff Newburgh

Jeff is a dedicated writer and communications professional from San Francisco with a bachelor of arts in anthropology from UC Berkeley. He began his career in computer consulting and later branched out into customer service. Jeff focuses on making complex topics easy to understand. With over 10 years' experience in research, his relentless curiosity fuels a love of writing and learning how things work, and has helped to build expertise in categories such as heavy-duty power tools and computer equipment. Jeff's passion for animals affords him a strong understanding of pet products, including dog houses, beds, and grain-free foods. When he's not writing, he prefers spending time with his family and three dogs, while kicking back and relaxing with a nice glass of red wine.

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